Highlights from Fred Pearce and Joe Romm

Fred Pearce – notes from With Speed & Violence, references are to the Kindle page number “Concern about our raw materials casts a dark shadow over mankind,” he wrote, in an early outburst of twentieth century environmental concern. “Our descendants surely will censure us for having squandered their just birthright.” His great fear was that oil supplies would dry up, …

Asian typhoons becoming more intense, have grown 50% stronger in the past 40 years due to warming seas

By Damian Carrington in The Guardian, 2016  On 7 July 2015, satellite images showed the Pacific Ocean with two typhoons, one tropical storm, one formation alert and one large area of increased convection. Photograph: JMA MTSAT-2/NOAA The destructive power of the typhoons that wreak havoc across China, Japan, Korea and the Philippines has intensified by 50% in the past 40 years due …

Like Exxon, Utilities Knew about Climate Change Risks Decades Ago: A new report shows through documents and testimony how utilities researched climate change and determined in the 1970s that it could force a shift away from coal.

By John Cushman, Inside Climate News, 25 July 2017  The Electric Power Research Institute wrote publicly in 1988 about the growing consensus that the greenhouse effect is real. Credit: Sean Gallup/Getty Images A study issued Tuesday by an energy watchdog group offers important new insights into the fossil fuel industry’s extensive early understanding of climate change and the risks it poses. This …

428 planned Amazon dams present major disturbances to Amazon floodplains, rainforests, the northeast coast of South America and the regional climate

Hundreds of built and proposed hydroelectric dams may significantly harm life in and around the Amazon by trapping the flow of rich nutrients and modifying the climate from Central America to the Gulf of Mexico. These findings, published in Nature, emerge from a multidisciplinary, international collaboration of researchers from 10 universities, led by scientists at The University of Texas at …

7 reasons to be alarmed by record-setting levels of CO2

By Joe Romm, Climate Progress, June 2017:  Trump puts humanity back on track to CO2 levels not seen since it was 5° to 10°F warmer and seas were 75 to 120 feet higher.   Despite the best efforts of the Trump administration to ignore or contradict scientific reality, carbon dioxide levels continue to soar far outside the bounds of what Homo …

How scientific causation came to be solidified in the tobacco use vs. lung cancer death rates era, relevance to climate skeptics now

By Seth Miller, see Newsfeed for the whole article, June 2017 Data credit: cancer.org, original image slightly reformatted by me in Tableau Long before research exposed evidence that humans cause global warming, science made another sensational claim — that smoking caused lung cancer.  That case has been proven beyond doubt. But there is a science story from this era that is mostly forgotten: The battle …

David Suzuki: Not looking away…We can and must stop dramatically cut down on our use of fossil fuels and plastics

By David Suzuki, EcoWatch, 24 May 2017 People who deny that humans are wreaking havoc on the planet’s life-support systems astound me. When confronted with the obvious damage we’re doing to the biosphere—from climate change to water and air pollution to swirling plastic patches in the oceans—some dismiss the reality or employ logical fallacies to discredit the messengers.  It’s one …

Enabling better planning for droughts in Africa

University of Exeter. “Summer rainfall in vulnerable African region can be predicted.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 May 2017. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/05/170525085109.htm Summer rainfall in one of the world’s most drought-prone regions can now be predicted months or years in advance, climate scientists at the Met Office and the University of Exeter say. The Sahel region of Africa — a strip across the southern …

Allergy, oak pollen and ragweed seasons growing with climate change

More children could wind up in hospital emergency rooms suffering from allergy-induced asthma if greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise and cause longer oak pollen seasons, according to a new study. The new research finds that if greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase through the end of this century, the oak pollen season in some areas could extend by up …